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The meaning of retirement – the end of an era?

Clive Pilcher, blogger at Take It Easy, is 61 and a retired employee of the NHS. Having suffered from two bouts of depression, he was encouraged to write about his experiences and share them.
On his blog he discusses his random thoughts about the joys of retirement. His feedback on the Skipton Building Society ‘Meaning of Retirement’ research is a riveting read…
Clive notes that we all share concern about our golden years:
  • He recognises that the closer we get toward retirement, the more we look forward to it
  • Clive had a workplace pension scheme and felt lucky to retire on his 60th birthday. He felt ready to leave work, and also felt that he had earned it
  • He understands how boredom and loneliness can lead to depression and feels passionately that having something to do is crucial to a happy retirement
  • He is a huge advocate of planning for your retirement; and suggests that no-one should leave it to chance.

The negatives of retirement

Having read the ‘Meaning of Retirement’ research, Clive chose to hone in on the words and phrases that people had referenced as negative, rather than those relating to a happy retirement. Words such as ‘boredom’ and ‘loneliness’ were very close to Clive’s heart, and terms such as ‘the end of an era’ he views as positive, seeing retirement as a new start
He advises that having things to do, such as keeping in contact with friends and colleagues, as well as looking for opportunities to get involved in activities to keep the mind busy, such as getting involved with the University of the Third Age (U3A), are good ways to combat boredom and loneliness.
The three words boredom, lonely and depressing are, to me, closely related, in that the first two can lead to the third. I still have loads of things I want to do, but as I’m barely a year into what I hope will be at least 25 years of retirement, there is still plenty of time. I haven’t been bored once since I retired, even when I have been on my own for a few days at a time. I have plenty to do to interest and occupy myself.
Find out about Clive’s first year of retirement and his take on the meaning of it here.
Are you worried about being bored or lonely in retirement? Share your thoughts with us below.
This article has been commissioned by retiresavvy and any opinions voiced are the author's own.


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